Move site collections (Office SharePoint Server)

Applies To: Office SharePoint Server 2007

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Topic Last Modified: 2008-05-05

Move site collections

An administrator can use Batch Site Manager to move one or more site collections between existing content databases associated with the same Web application.


Currently, you can only move site collections within the same Web application.

Before you begin a move of any site collection, check the quota limits of each site collection from the Site Collection Quotas and Locks page to ensure you do not run out of space. Once the quota limits are confirmed, select the appropriate Web application and content database. This step ensures that you have the proper site collections displayed. After these two procedures have been performed, you can begin to move the site collections.

Task requirements

The following are required to perform the procedures for this task:

  • You must be a member of the Farm Administrators group within the SharePoint server farm.

For additional information about security roles, see Plan for security roles (Office SharePoint Server).

To move site collections

  1. On the SharePoint Central Administration Web page, in the Batch Site Manager section, click Move, Lock, and Delete Site Collections.

  2. (Optional) On the Move, Lock, and Delete Multiple Site Collections page, a statistics aggregation timer job should be started and completed in order to make sure the status of a site collection is the latest, depending on how recently such a job was run.

  3. On the Move, Lock, and Delete Multiple Site Collections page, select one or more check boxes to indicate which site collection or collections you want to move.

  4. Click Move.

  5. On the Move Multiple Site Collections page, in the Name and Description section, type a name and description (optional) for the timer job that will perform the move operation.

  6. In the Target Content Database section, select the content database to which all site collections will be moved.

  7. In the Server section, select a front-end Web server on which the timer job will run. By default, the first free front-end Web server is used.

  8. In the Temporary File Location section, type the name of the location where temporary files are to be stored. By default, the Temporary files folder on the local computer is used; however, you can specify an alternative location, for example, a network share. This is a required value. If left blank, the following message is displayed: “This field can't be empty! Please input a temporary path to store backup file.”

  9. In the Schedule Job section, click Now to run the timer job immediately, or Specified Time (in the format MM/DD/YYYY HH:MM) to indicate a time in the future. By default, the timer job runs immediately.

  10. In the Success/Failure Notification section, click the Send e-mail when site collection job succeeds or Send e-mail if site collection job fails check boxes if you want to receive notifications. To receive notifications, provide an e-mail address in the E-mail Address box.


    You can select both check boxes.

  11. Click OK.


Site collections will not be moved until the aggregate timer job is run.

Important considerations

During a move operation, the lock status of an impacted site collection is set to Read-only by default. You are not able to add or update any information to these sites during the move; attempting to do so will prevent the site collection from being moved. Such addition and update actions are logged in the BSM_YYYY_MM_DDD log file, which is located in the following folder:

%COMMOMPROGRAMFILES%\Microsoft Shared\web server extensions\12\Logs

To determine a site collection’s lock status, use the following Stsadm operation, Getsitelock: Stsadm operation (Office SharePoint Server).

During a move operation, do not perform any of the following tasks in the associated Web application:

  • Create a new site collection, either by using the Create Site Collection page of Central Administration or the Createsite Stsadm operation.

  • Create a new content database.

  • Perform another move operation.

  • Delete a site collection.

Any one of these tasks may cause the following error messages to be displayed:

  • Operation FAILED: Amount of sites to be moved exceeds the capacity of target DB.

  • Operation FAILED: An error occurred in stsadm.exe while moving the site.

Do not delete a move timer job that is still running either by manually deleting it using either Central Administration or Stsadm. Instead, let each timer job successfully complete or fail before another timer job is scheduled. Even if a running move timer job is deleted from the timer job definition list on the Central Administration Web page, the operation will continue to run.


If another move operation is scheduled while the current move timer job is running, there will be two move operations at the same time. This situation can potentially cause data loss.